How many of us enter motherhood knowing how much we need God’s grace? 

From the time I was a young girl, the desire for motherhood imprinted itself on my heart. When God finally gave us our two sons through adoption, I’d spun over thirty-five times around the sun. I believed I was ready for motherhood. 

I had no clue about how much I would need God’s grace on this mom journey.

Because I became a mom later than most of my friends, I heard stories of heartbreak during their children’s teen years. My secret goal became to avoid that pain. This goal was birthed from a lack of understanding of children and the fear of said pain. 

In our boys’ younger years, I studied and read about how to maintain healthy relationships with teens. As they grew, I asked lots of open-ended questions. Conversations with our sons enlarged my understanding of what was in their hearts. 

Our boys’ early teen years seemed easy. I know. Boys? Easy? Teen years? Easy

I naively thought we’d done a good job with them, and these years from twelve to eighteen would be about deepening our relationships.

Then our oldest hit seventeen. And the pandemic happened. And my mothering foundation was rocked by changes in him. He pushed away from us, chose rebellion over relationship, and shattered my heart into hundreds of shards. I felt like a complete failure in the mom department.

Gods grace mom with sons
What God’s Grace in Mothering Looks Like 5

God’s gift of grace for loving well, especially when it’s painful

How do we love well when our kids break our hearts? I imagine we’ve all had to choose how we’d do this. 

Sometimes, that choice means digging in and pursuing a relationship. Our oldest did many things he knew were wrong and refused to accept responsibility for his choices. 

Grace for loving him well looked like me crying out to God and Him reassuring me. Later, I found myself asking God to help me see our son through His eyes. On occasion, I wanted to lock the boy-man in his room until he was forty-three.

But God.

When our sons were small, I’d told them I would always love them. That there was nothing they could do that would cause me to stop loving them. I meant it. And I still mean it. Both have tested this statement. 

What God’s Grace in Mothering Looks Like—When our sons were small, I'd told them I would always love them. That there was nothing they could do that would cause me to stop loving them. #tellhisstory #mothering #lovewell Click To Tweet

Hubs and I prayed for our son. We had hard conversations with him. God showed us we needed to pivot in our parenting—such a hard thing when we were used to doing things one way. Part of the struggle was our son wanting more control over his life. Part of it was me being forced to let go of aspects of our relationship so he could learn how to be independent. 

Through God’s grace, we allowed him to make mistakes and choices that impacted his life. And He gave us the grace to support our son as he figured out how to redirect. 

God gifts us grace in the hard seasons. We need to turn to Him first, pray for His wisdom, and for the ability to see our children through His eyes. This can be transformational. 

Another glimpse at loving well

Sometimes, loving well means letting them go for a season. When having an almost-adult/adult child in the home destroys family cohesiveness, there may be a time when that adult (almost adult) child is asked to find another place to live for a bit. Is this painful? YES.

But grace is found when we’ve talked with the Lord about this painful decision, and we sense God’s “yes” in the answer. Though our children may not be under our roof, God still watches over them. He may allow them to come to the last thread of themselves, but they are never invisible to our Father. 

Sometimes, God’s grace comes through Him saying, “Let Me care for them.” Our mama’s hearts still break, still grieve over the broken relationship. But, when we know God is in control, the pain becomes less. 

Grace to let go of our mistakes

We’ve all made mistakes on this mama journey. When our kids are young, the errors seem smaller and easier to fix, though some haunt us for years. When our kids are teens, those mistakes feel more significant, more condemning, and more final. 

Our amazing Father who loves us knows how to redeem our mistakes. God fills in our gaps in mothering.

Mistakes with our kids

When we mess up in some aspect of our mothering, we must confess our errors to our children, humble ourselves, and ask their forgiveness. If they’re willing to talk, listen to what they say without correcting or explaining. When they know we’re listening, we show love in a powerful way. 

We must also confess our sinful actions to God and ask for His forgiveness. Regret is a horrible taskmaster. When our past mistakes rise up and call us condemned, let’s cling to the truth that God has forgiven us. He is working in our children’s lives. 

Gods grace two young men
What God’s Grace in Mothering Looks Like 6

Conclusion

Is God’s grace for moms easy to understand? No. Can we embrace it wholeheartedly and know it is for us? Yes. 

As with many other aspects of our Christian lives, living into God’s grace takes time, a shifting mindset about Him and us, and a willingness to see ourselves through God’s eyes. 

What God’s Grace in Mothering Looks Like— living into God's grace takes time, a shifting mindset about Him and us, and a willingness to see ourselves through God's eyes.  #tellhisstory #mothering #lovewell Click To Tweet

Our Father never expects us to mother alone, in our strength. He designed parenting to be a journey that draws us closer to Him and teaches us how to love as Jesus does. 

What about you? How do you deal with regret over decisions you made with your kids? What helps you to accept God’s grace in your mothering?

*****Next week, we’re linking up at Donna’s place: Serenity in Suffering. bookmark this link so you can travel there easily.

Come share your story at the Tell His Story linkup. Connect and be encouraged by like-minded friends! #tellhisstory #linkup Click To Tweet

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